|UCT Ikeys' Enoch Panya is brought down by North-West University's Paul Bosch and Harry van Dyk in the Varsity Cup rugby clash at UCT on 18 February. UCT's James Martin is in support. UCT lost 17-23. Also on the night, Maties drew 31-31 with Tuks|
Despite a strong second half when the Ikeys put their nerves behind them to produce a commanding performance, they went down 17-23 to North West University (Pukke) in the opening game of the new FNB Varsity Cup league at UCT last night.
UCT trailed 5-15 at half time, playing into a bullying wind. Though strong on defence they missed vital penalty kicks and a conversion and allowed a soft try late in the first half.
Nonetheless, it was fitting that the first try scored in the new tournament was dotted by the Ikeys after a strong run by right winger Marcello Sampson.
The FNB Varsity Cup will see SA's top eight university teams vying for top honours. The final will be held in April. Some matches will be broadcast live on SuperSport.
General manager of UCT Rugby, Gavin Sheldon, said he was pleased with the performance.
"It was the first game of a very young team and in the first 20 minutes of the second half we came back at them. We played beautifully."
With the wind behind them and kicking for territory, it was replacement Matthew Turner who stamped his name all over the latter second half, scoring a pair of silky tries on the wing. There was a brief sniff at victory when the Ikeys drove over Pukke's try line in the final minutes but lost the ball just short of the line.
|UCT Ikeys' James Martin is caught by North-West University's (Pukke) Rowen de Villiers. Next week sees the Ikeys take on Tuks at home at 17h30|
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